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Archive: August - 2013 (4)

  • Jobspring Partners' Weekly Market Knowledge Report

    Every Monday in our Jobspring offices around the country, the recruiters participate in “Market Knowledge” – a chance to share articles to inform the office about what is going on in the tech markets in our cities. Since we find this knowledge share so useful, we thought that we could start sharing some of these articles with our blog readers! So here are the articles that our cities found the most useful and informative:

    Boston

    New Massachusetts tech tax hurts job creation, Pioneer Valley software companies consider court fight (MassLive)

    With the vague new tech tax looming, Massachusetts companies are preparing for a fight.

    Submitted by: Phill Perkins

    Survey Finds Entrepreneurs Are Happy to Be in Boston (BostInno.com)

    The New England Venture Capital Association decided to find out just how happy Boston’s innovators are.

    Submitted by: Andrew Baker

    Chicago

    Groupon moves in on Google, Yahoo with global marketing effort  (Chicago Tribune)

    Groupon Inc. has introduced a global affiliate program to distribute its deals more widely.

    Submitted by:  Katie King

    Big data: Recruiting future or fad?  (Chicago Tribune)

    Want to learn more about Big Data? Check out #TechInMotion – Big Data with the Obama for America Campaign.

    Submitted by:  Nick Direso

    Los Angeles

    Beats Electronics Buys Back Shares From HTC  (SoCal Tech)

    Los Angeles-based Beats Audio and smartphone maker HTC are in a deal where Beats will buy back 25% of its total shares from HTC…

    Submitted By: Charlotte Haun

    LogMeIn’s Join.me Can Now Record Meetings & Save Them To Cubby, The Company’s Alternative To Dropbox  (Tech Crunch)

    Join.me is adding a trio of features designed to better support its business users…

    Submitted By: Dana Henderson

    Orange County

    Apple will ship two new iPhones in 'early September,' says WSJ (The Verge)

    Apple is expected to unveil the iPhone 5S, on September 10th. Rumors and leaked photos suggest Apple is also prepping to announce a new, less costly iPhone with a plastic build that will be available in a variety of colors.

    Submitted by: Kevin Lin

    Samsung's Galaxy Gear smartwatch is real, and it's not a phone (The Verge)  

    Although the Gear was identified as being able to “make phone calls”, the smartwatch will not be a phone, but instead be able to work with phones.

    Submitted by: Kevin Lin

    Philadelphia

    eMoney Advisor: Conshohocken software firm to open San Diego office (Technically Philly)

    The new office coincides with the launch of the latest version of 360, eMoney Advisor's web-based software.

    Submitted by:  Keith Wilson

    More women finding jobs in tech sector  (USA Today)

    Talks about women gaining more of a foothold in the technology field and addresses the gender gap in tech employment.

    Submitted by:  Kevin Maas

    San Francisco

    Apple Begins Power Adapter Trade-In Program (ABC News)


    Apple is starting a third party charger trade-in program, to rid the world of fake apple chargers after a woman in China was electrocuted with one of these chargers.  Bring your third party charger in for an Apple brand charger for $9.

    Submitted by: Sarah Filippo

    Why Microsoft’s 3D Printing Partnership Makes Sense (Tech Crunch)

    Microsoft is partnering with Makerbot, recognized as the “Kleenex” of the 3D printing market. This is a major move by Microsoft to take an early market share of the 3D printing market and move the technology into the mainstream.

    Submitted by: Matthew Wilson

    Silicon Valley

    LinkedIn targets college-bound teens (SV Business Journal)

    Beginning Sept. 12th, teens ages 14 and older will be able to create LinkedIn profiles.

    Submitted by Jessica Chandler

    Google Plans to Track your Gaze for Ad Dollars (SV Business Journal)

    Google was recently approved for a pay-per-gaze patent. Will this revive print advertising!?

    Submitted by Daniel Urbaniak

     

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  • Want to Work from Home? Apple says "no problem!"

    Q&A with Ashley Verrill, Software Advice


    Every week our office conducts Market Knowledge Monday, as a fun way to stay up-to-date on industry news and educate blog readers on what’s going on in the tech markets of some the Jobspring office cities. During a recent Market Knowledge Monday, Shane Tomlinson filled us in on a TechCrunch article, which discussed how Apple trains their At-Home Advisors, a group of customer service representatives who work remotely. We wanted to learn more about the tools and training methods Apple employs for their remote teams, so we followed up with the article’s author, Software Advice CRM Analyst Ashley Verrill, to find out how other technology companies might leverage Apple’s tactics.


    Jobspring Partners: In your article you discuss the “At-Home Advisors” program at Apple, which is for employees who are hired remotely and never enter an Apple office. Do Apple employees who work on one of their campuses have a telecommuting option?  And if so, how do they become eligible for it? And what is their training process?


    Ashley: The only people I interviewed for this article were the at-home advisors, so I can’t really speak to that with exact certainty (I did get a hold of Apple, but they refused to comment). However, I did get some really active discussion on the article from people who claimed to work for Apple, who said they don’t have an official telecommuting policy. One person said they work in an onsite call center providing “chat” support for Apple and can work overtime from home (specifically, she said “we can also work as much overtime as we want, which includes taking PlayStation games home over the weekend to test them out.”). So, it’s possible their policy varies by department or is less defined than what they use for their at-home advisors. I would definitely be interested to know more details. Maybe they’ll read our interview and chime in!


    Jobspring Partners: In your opinion, could Apple’s At-Home training program work for similar tech companies? Or does it only work because Apple is such a successful, well known company?


    Ashley: Yes to both questions, because there are some tactics that could work for other companies, and others that only Apple can get away with because everyone wants Apple on their resume. For the latter, I think some of the intense monitoring they do during training, as far as watching mouse movements and calling your cell phone if they suspect you aren’t there, would cause a lot of candidates to head for the hills in another context. But then there are things like the way Apple fosters camaraderie that I think could be really successful for any company. The biggest complaint I hear from remote workers in general is that they feel really isolated. This doesn’t sound like someone who is engaged and excited about what they’re doing, which inevitably leads to turnover issues.


    Apple always starts trainings in groups of 20-100 people all in the same area. They meet for “class” online all at the same time and constantly chat and even talk on the phone with each other during training. Between classes, the moderators encourage trainees to talk about themselves. One of the advisors I spoke to talked about a crazy hat day where everyone turned on their camera to show their hat. Another person talked about days where everyone sent pictures of their lunch. This sounds kind of juvenile on the surface, and the folks I spoke to laughed about it, but it was clearly successful. Even people that no longer work at Apple told me they keep in touch with other former advisors.


    Jobspring Partners: You discuss the tactics for At-Home training quite extensively but do not address the technologies used in the training process. For instance, is the video chat feature that managers employ, Skype? Or has Apple created their own software simply for this training program?


    Ashley: The advisors I spoke to mentioned using Cisco’s WebEx for online meetings, iDesk for content and lluminate Education for training modules, which is interesting because that’s actually made for K-12 educators. Then, of course, every advisor is shipped a box before training with an iMac desktop computer, headset and their phone. Some advisors said they would get other products, depending on which division they were providing support for (services versus hardware).


    Jobspring Partners: Outside of their managers, do remote employees have contact with employees that work on Apple’s campuses, or are their remote teams within their “city hubs” their only connection to the Apple family?


    Ashley: They didn’t talk a lot about contact with any other physical Apple locations. One of the first things they do in training is talk about the culture, Steve Jobs, and working from the corporate office. They watch some videos and see pictures of the main office. Beyond that though, they don’t make a concerted effort to connect remote works with physical locations. Some of the workers actually work for a contractor after training is over, so they are technically employed by someone else.


    Jobspring Partners: In your research, were you able to get in touch with any managers of the At-Home Advisors program? And if so, do they have any advice for other managers in how to monitor and manage remote employees?


    Ashley: No, but the advisors all spoke extremely positively about their managers. They said they made a real effort to “speak at their level.” They weren’t stuck on a high horse, and they were really proactive about making sure everyone in the group understood all of the training and were successful in the role. If someone failed a test, they would take time to review what answers they did get wrong and help them study up for the retake. They talked a lot about feedback, but not in a negative way. If something went wrong in their mock call, the whole group would immediately talk about it. This made it feel less like someone just wagging a finger at you. The advisors talked about them as being “mentors.

    Metrics are also extremely important for advisors’ success after training. Remote workers are monitored extremely closely, primarily by way of time-to-resolution and customer satisfaction. The agents with the best performance get the better schedules, time off, and even prizes like lunch paid for by Apple. So, I think as long as companies set clear expectations and have methods for monitoring performance of remote workers, they can moderate any productivity issues. 

  • Jobspring Partners' Weekly Market Knowledge Report

    Every Monday in our Jobspring offices around the country, the recruiters participate in “Market Knowledge” – a chance to share articles to inform the office about what is going on in the tech markets in our cities. Since we find this knowledge share so useful, we thought that we could start sharing some of these articles with our blog readers! So here are the articles that our cities found the most useful and informative:

    Boston

    How Apple Gets At-Home Workers To Work (TechCrunch.com)

    In contrast to Yahoo’s strict “no working from home” policy, Apple has found a way to determine which employees are well-suited to work from home.

    Submitted by: Shane Tomlinson

    Tide turning against use of noncompete agreements in Mass. (Boston Business Journal)

    In the state of Massachusetts, noncompete agreements may soon be a thing of the past.

    Submitted by: Matt Sottile

    Chicago

    Twitter prepares to fly IPO  (USA Today)

    Twitter appears to be getting ready to issue stock to the public in the wake of social media companion Facebook's return to favor on Wall Street.

    Submitted by: Jaime Hecker

    Business is Like Candy Crush*  (LinkedIn)

    This article will make no sense to anyone unfamiliar with the game; stop reading now if you don't play Candy Crush; or play Candy Crush, and then revisit this post.

    Submitted by:  Nicholas Direso

    Los Angeles

    Baby Boomers Sharpen Their Skills With Tech Classes  (CBS News)

    Several baby boomers are taking leaps with technology to make sure they can keep up in the workforce.

    Submitted By: Sam Shaw

    Entertainment and Technology Meet in Hollywood’s Backyard  (Variety.com)

    Intersection between Hollywood and Silicon Valley growing.

    Submitted By: Elise Rheiner

    San Francisco

    IT jobs at an all-time high, Again!  (StaffingIndustry.com)

    IT jobs at an all-time high, again. IT employment increased by 5.9 percent on a year-over-year basis, adding almost 251,500 IT workers.

    Submitted by Morgan Khodayari

    LinkedIn Now Lets Jobseekers Apply For Positions Directly Via Its Mobile Apps (TechCrunch)

    LinkedIn Now Lets Jobseekers Apply For Positions Directly Via Its Mobile Apps, without having to use a resume.

    Submitted by: Summer Ramsey

    Silicon Valley

    The Cultural Revolution Businesses Cannot Afford to Ignore(Linked In)

    Businesses don’t utilize mobile apps for employees to work off smartphones.

    Submitted by: Ernie Molieri

    Google glass software update (Tech Crunch)

    New Software update. New video player, Evernote integration.

    Submitted by: Brad White

     

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  • Jobspring Partners' Weekly Market Knowledge Report

    Every Monday in our Jobspring offices around the country, the recruiters participate in “Market Knowledge” – a chance to share articles to inform the office about what is going on in the tech markets in our cities. Since we find this knowledge share so useful, we thought that we could start sharing some of these articles with our blog readers! So here are the articles that our cities found the most useful and informative:

    Boston

    Welcome to Massachusetts’ new innovation tax(Boston Business Journal)

    Throughout Massachusetts any company within the IT consulting industry must charge a 6.25% sales tax on all services provided.

    Submitted by: Adam Salk

    5 tips for Boston tech firms to attract talented interns (Boston Business Journal)

    These 5 tips are essential when looking to hire interns as well as full-time employees.

    Submitted by: Carole Sagliano

    Chicago

    College Students Looking To Chicago For Tech Careers  (CBS Chicago)

    College students looking for high tech careers say Chicago is becoming more and more attractive as a place to work.

    Submitted by:Greg Olsen

    20 Things 20-Year-Olds Don't Get  (Forbes)

    “Call me a curmudgeon, but at 34, how I came up seems so different from what this millennial generation expects.”

    Submitted by:Lauren Rice

    New York

    New York City's Culture Will Shape the Next Tech Sector (Harvard Business Review)              

    While no one can dispute Silicon Valley embodies the quintessential technology culture, there's another piece of the culture equation that matters just as much for startups now: diversity.

    Submitted by: Joseph Kern

    LinkedIn Now Lets Jobseekers Apply For Positions Directly Via Its Mobile Apps (Tech Crunch)

    Will LinkedIn’s new mobile application feature eliminate the need for resumes in the future?

    Submitted by: Lesley Chow

    Orange County

    PEAR Takes On Fitness Tracking, Workouts (SoCalTech)

    Irvine-based PEAR Sports announced this morning that it has launched a new product that uses a heart rate monitor and your smartphone to provide customized coaching and fitness training.

    Submitted by:  Nicole Torretta

    MicroPower Technologies Finds $5.7M In Funding (SoCalTech)

    San Diego-based MicroPower Technologies, which develops wireless, solar-powered surveillance hardware, has raised $5.7M in an equity funding.

    Submitted by:  Nicole Torretta  

    San Francisco

    Social Media Aggregator RebelMouse Raises $10.25M (Tech Crunch)

    A new platform including all of your social media, constantly updated, on one home page – ‘social front page’.

    Submitted by: Caitlin Van Horn

    Move Over Google Glass — GlassUp Is A Less Creepy And Much Cheaper Pair Of AR Specs(Tech Crunch)

    Glass Up is developing more realistic version of Google Glass to appear more like regular glasses. Glass up features enhanced privacy software, a mapping system, internet access and a text message feature.

    Submitted by Alyssa Wood

    Silicon Valley

    Obama administration rejects ban on some Apple products (Silicon Valley Business Journal)

    President Obama overturned an ITC ban on some older Apple products over the weekend. It was the first time that a president used this type of veto power since 1987.

    Submitted by: Scott Purcell

    Webflow Allows Users to Design Their Own Websites

    Webflow is a responsive web design platform that allows users to launch their website the same day the design is made. It doesn’t require users to export their design to code.

    Submitted by: Victor Chu

     

    Don't see something on this list that you read about recently?  Comment below and share market information that's a must know!

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